Wednesday will bring wild weather to the DraftKings Dream Stream once again with adverse conditions impacting all six Madden sims lined up throughout the day. The three-game featured classic slate gets underway at 6:00 p.m. ET with a game in the rain between the Arizona Cardinals and the New York Giants. In the primetime matchup at 8:00 p.m. ET, a pair of AFC North teams go head-to-head in the snow when the Cleveland Browns host Lamar Jackson ($8,300) and the Baltimore Ravens in their sixth meeting in these Madden 21 sims. There’s more snow in the forecast for the final game of the day as Patrick Mahomes ($7,700) and the Chiefs head to virtual Foxboro to take on the New England Patriots.
As in all of these Madden 21 sims, it’s important to know that each roster is not impacted by COVID-19 opt-outs, injuries, suspensions or illness and that the highest-rated options have been placed at the top of the depth charts. The roster for each team includes all player movement that occurred prior to Week 1 of this season and uses the Madden 21 ratings from Week 1 of this season.
For more details, you can find the game settings, depth charts, abilities and X-factors for each team in Madden 21 along with the upcoming schedule on the Madden Stream info page. There were a few tweaks to the X-factors and Superstars in the latest December update, so be sure to check the depth charts of each team.
Check out the daily DraftKings Madden Stream contests lobby with paid contests for real cash prizes now available alongside free contests. Each simulation will be played out computer vs. computer via an online Madden Stream using Madden 21. In this format, you can enjoy watching the game stream on the DraftKings YouTube channel, the DK Live app (download here) or right here in this post.
Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs at New England Patriots, $7,700 — Both Mahomes and Lamar Jackson ($8,300) are always outstanding plays, but on this slate with the weather, I think Mahomes is a slightly safer option. He had five touchdowns and 42.5 DKFP in his most recent matchup with the Patriots in these Madden 21 sims and posted 26.52 and 18.58 DKFP in their two earlier meetings. Jackson has faced the Browns five previous times in these sims with three big games over 28 DKFP but also two down games with 16.14 and 5.58 DKFP. While there’s no question each has upside and a sky-high ceiling, Mahomes has been more consistent, averaging 288.3 yards per game while piling up an impressive total of 155 passing touchdowns and 11 rushing touchdowns in 61 sims. He has over 22 DKFP in eight of his past nine sims, and he has the throw power to overcome any concerns with the snow and wind in New England. The Patriots do have an elite secondary, but he overcame them in their most recent meeting to throw for 370 yards and four touchdowns while adding a fifth on the ground to total 42.5 DKFP in the Chiefs’ 38-31 victory.
Other Option — Lamar Jackson ($8,300)
Daniel Jones, New York Giants vs. Arizona Cardinals, $6,000 — If you’re going to go cheap at QB, it makes sense to go all the way down to the bottom of the salary structure and see if you get a big game from Jones, who has been boom-or-bust in these sims. Jones does have a good matchup against the beatable Cardinals’ secondary, who he threw for 194 yards and two touchdowns against for 15.56 DKFP against earlier in these sims. Jones has had a few big games, including 27.16 DKFP in his most recent sim which was against the Chiefs. He has over 21 DKFP in 14 of his 51 sims (27%), and if he hits for that number at this salary, he could be the key to stacking superstars in other roster spots and giving your lineup a unique construction.
Other Option — Baker Mayfield ($6,900)
Saquon Barkley, New York Giants vs. Arizona Cardinals, $7,900 — Barkley beat up the Cardinals’ run defense for 108 yards, a touchdown and 21.2 DKFP in his first meeting with Arizona in these sims and is coming off a great showing against the Chiefs in which he had over 100 yards receiving and finished with 38.4 DKFP. He has at least 16.0 DKFP in four straight games and seven of his past eight sims. While the Giants are undecided about his fifth-year option, according to reports that came out Tuesday, you can play the Quadfather with confidence in this matchup since he should romp past the Cardinals, especially in soggy conditions at virtual MetLife Stadium.
Other Option — Clyde Edwards-Helaire ($6,100)
Kareem Hunt, Cleveland Browns vs. Baltimore Ravens, $4,400 — Hunt shares time in the Browns’ backfield with Nick Chubb ($5,700), but his role as third-down back has helped him be regularly involved in this divisional matchup. He has been remarkably consistent in his five games against the Ravens, posting 10.2, 9.8, 9.5, 10.2 and 9.2 DKFP. He has shown a higher ceiling when he gets into the end zone, but even if he’s right around 10 DKFP, he’s a solid play at this salary. In his 51 sims overall, he is averaging 8.7 DKFP on 3.2 catches for 25.1 receiving yards and 20.0 rushing yards per sim.
Other Option — James White ($4,600), J.K. Dobbins ($4,000)
Tyreek Hill, Kansas City Chiefs at New England Patriots, $7,700 — The Patriots have Superstar X-factor CB Stephon Gilmore, who could match up with Hill in what would be a wildly entertaining head-to-head showdown. However, Gilmore doesn’t often move into the slot, which is where Hill lines up in the majority of the Chiefs’ formations. Hill has an outstanding 99 speed rating and has posted exactly 24.7 DKFP in each of his past two most recent matchups with New England. He was held to “just” 12.2 DKFP in their first meeting, but he has shown no one can really fully shut him down. Hill has gotten heavy volume throughout his 61 sims, averaging 6.3 catches for 94.0 yards per sim, and he has scored an impressive total of 57 touchdowns over those contests, including a total of six in his past six sims.
Other Option — Odell Beckham Jr. ($6,800)
Willie Snead IV, Baltimore Ravens at Cleveland Browns, $4,500 — Snead is the slot receiver for Jackson’s Ravens and has a favorable matchup against the Browns. He has posted three catches in each of his three most recent meetings with Cleveland and has scored two of his 14 total Madden 21 touchdowns against the Browns. He is coming off a monster game in which he totaled 116 yards and 27.6 DKFP against the Raiders and has multiple catches in eight of his past nine contests. Typically, weather games result in more work for slot WRs on shorter routes, where Snead specifically finds success on a regular basis in these sims.
Darius Slayton, New York Giants vs. Arizona Cardinals, $3,900 — Slayton has more touchdowns than any other WR on the Giants with 18 scores in his 51 sims. He has a catch in all but one of those contests, averaging 2.5 catches for 45.6 yards per game. Slayton had three catches, 47 yards and 7.7 DKFP against Arizona earlier in these sims and is coming off back-to-back games with double-digit DKFP. The Cardinals don’t have much depth at CB, so the WR3 for the Giants could end up in a favorable matchup.
Other Options — Sterling Shepard ($5,000), Julian Edelman ($4,800), Damiere Byrd ($4,300), Demarcus Robinson ($3,800)
Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs at New England Patriots, $6,100 — Kelce has had over 21 DKFP in each of his three previous matchups with the Patriots, highlighted by 31.0 DKFP in one of those contests. He is actually a safer play than Hill on this slate given the matchup and situation, since TEs typically do well against New England and get a slight bump in volume for weather-impacted games. Kelce has averaged 5.9 catches for 69.4 yards per sim while scoring 34 touchdowns in 61 contests.
Evan Engram, New York Giants vs. Arizona Cardinals, $5,000 — While you could take a flier on either of the other options listed below, their involvement has been so sporadic in these sims that they are very high risk. It makes more sense to give Engram a look as a pivot from Kelce or a second TE and use the receiving RBs or cheap WR as plays under $5K on this slate. Engram has been solid at $5K, though, averaging 12.4 DKFP on 5.0 catches for 52.9 yards per sim to go with 15 touchdowns in 51 sims. He has double-digit DKFP in six of his past seven games and had five catches for 81 yards and 13.1 DKFP in his first meeting with the Chiefs in Madden 21.
Other Options — Austin Hooper ($4,800), Mark Andrews ($3,800)
Ravens DST at Cleveland Browns, $3,100 — The Ravens’ defense hasn’t been elite, but they have been solid at limiting opponents’ point production and have been able to pile up 102 sacks in 56 sims. They have only forced 25 turnovers and scored five defensive touchdowns in those contests, but they have been a solid play even if they don’t hit their ceiling as often as the elite DSTs. Against the Browns, the Ravens have had at least 3.0 DKFP in each of their five meetings and have averaged 5.2 DKFP per sim, highlighted by 9.0 DKFP in their most recent meeting.
Giants DST vs. Arizona Cardinals, $2,700 — The Giants have had some good games and some bad games as a DST with 21 takeaways in 51 sims to go with 72 sacks and two defensive touchdowns. Kyler Murray ($7,000) has had some turnover issues in these sims at times, especially in weather, so New York could get a pick or a fumble recovery in the rain in this contest. They’re a punt play at this spot, but they have more upside than the other cheap options available.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Z.Thompson) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.